Oct 2, 2010 2:35pm
50 Years of "The Andy Griffith Show" (and fun facts) Part 2
Rockne Tarkington is the only African-American actor ever to have a speaking role on the show. He appeared in one episode as Opie's piano-playing football coach.
Andy and Barney's squad car was a Ford Galaxie. The cars were supplied free of charge by a nearby Ford dealer, and whenever the newest model came out, it was sent to the studio and the old one was returned to the dealer who re-painted it and sold it. Altogether, there were about 10 different Ford Galaxies used throughout the run of the series.
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Elinor Donahue decided not to return after the first season because she felt she had no on-screen chemistry with Andy Griffith. Griffith later admitted that it was his own fault because had a hard time showing affection on-screen, and as a result, the relationship didn't appear real or believable.
The final season of the show was pretty much a setup for its replacement, "Mayberry R.F.D." (1968).
The show was shot on the same set as Atlanta from Gone with the Wind (1939), if you were to walk out of the courthouse and look to the right at the end of the street, you can see the old Atlanta train station in many episodes.
Aunt Bee was originally from Morgantown, West Virginia
Sheriff Taylor did not routinely appear wearing a necktie or a sidearm. In several episodes, he wears a necktie or a sidearm in special circumstances, such as when a VIP visited Mayberry or if he had to track an escaped convict reported to be in the vicinity. He rarely was shown smoking, but did so in several episodes.
When Howard McNear left the show after years of declining health, his departure was explained by having Floyd sell the barbershop and moving away to be with his daughter.
The series ended while still at the top of the Nielsen's Ratings, one of only three shows to have done so, along with "I Love Lucy" (1951) and "Seinfeld" (1990).
When Don Knotts left the show, his absence was explained by having Barney move to Raleigh, North Carolina to join their police department.
One of the maps used for a period of time behind Andy's desk was simply a state map of Nevada turned upside down.
In several early episodes the map behind Andy's desk was a state highway map of Idaho turned upside down.
The character 'Andy Taylor' was ranked #8 in TV Guide's list of the "50 Greatest TV Dads of All Time" (20 June 2004 issue).
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When Don Knotts left the show, Jerry Van Dyke was considered for the part of a deputy who would have replaced Barney Fife, and even appears in a deputy's uniform in a fifth-season episode. However, Van Dyke chose instead to star in NBC's "My Mother the Car" (1965), and later said if he had to do it over again, he would have taken the deputy part instead.
Before Aunt Bee moved in with Andy, he had a housekeeper named Rose. Andy performed her wedding ceremony in the first episode.
The theme song for the series was titled "The Fishing Hole". Lyrics for the song were written by Everett Sloane but the producers decided that whistling the tune set the tone for the show, so the words were dropped.
During the opening credits as Andy and Opie walk down the path, Opie picks up a rock and throws it off camera right as Andy nods in a very distinct manner, before they start walking again. Years later, Andy Griffith watched this and realized he was unintentionally imitating a certain nod that his father would give him to show approval.
The opening credits were expanded slightly during the original network run. After Opie throws the rock into the lake the camera shot would change to a close-up of the water rippling, the logo of the sponsor's product appearing in the middle.
The show debuted in October 1960, but the characters of Andy and Opie originally debuted on an episode of Danny Thomas' show "The Danny Thomas Show" (1953) in February 1960 (Thomas' production company produced both shows). Frances Bavier, who later played Aunt Bee, was introduced as Harriet Perkins.
In early episodes, to the right of the cells above the glass-covered shelves is a small picture of President Woodrow Wilson and the presidents before him. Later, during most seasons, a different poster is there, also of the presidents, this time up to Dwight D. Eisenhower, and was published by Women's Day Magazine in 1956.
Songwriter Earle Hagen provided the whistling to the theme song in the show's opening-credits, which is titled "The Fishing Hole". Andy Griffith recorded a lyric version of the song, but it was never aired.
When not on duty, or when he's going out on a date, Barney Fife can routinely be seen wearing a white straw fedora, "salt-n-pepper" pattern coat and a red bow tie. During his movie career after leaving the series, Don Knotts almost always wore the same suit. It appears in such films as The Ghost and Mr. Chicken (1966), The Reluctant Astronaut (1967), The Incredible Mr. Limpet (1964) and How to Frame a Figg (1971).
Andy Griffith had been a successful stand-up comedian as well as an actor before beginning the show and he had fully expected to be the main funny character on it, and in the first few episodes even performed some of his stand-up routines, like his countrified versions of classic fairy tales. However, when Don Knotts became such a popular favorite as Deputy Barney Fife, Griffith decided for the good of the show to let Knotts be the main comic figure and let Sheriff Taylor react to him as his "straight man."
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The four men who played the four Darling sons, were a blue grass group called The Dillards - Doug Dillard, Rodney Dillard, 'Dean Webb', and Mitch Jayne. Andy Griffith said years later that he actually performed with them on the show.
Barney Fife was Andy Taylor's cousin. There were three episodes that mentioned Andy and Barney being cousins: "The New Housekeeper", "The Manhunt" and "Runaway Kid". Also, in "Andy and the New Mayor", Barney mentions, growing up and attending school with Andy (they got first and second place in a penmanship contest) as well as being Andy's best man at his first wedding and being the Opie's godfather.
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Opie Taylor was named for Opie Cates(clarinet player), a prominent band leader of the 1930s and 1940s whom Andy Griffith and Sheldon Leonard, the show's producer, both admired.
Josie Lloyd, the actress who Mayor Pike's daughter Juanita in "Mayberry Goes Hollywood", is seen again in "The Beauty Contest" and plays the mayor's daughter, Josephine. Her Juanita character is not "the" Juanita the waitress that Barney pines for; her name was Juanita Beasley. Lloyd also had a recurring role in the third and fifth seasons as Lydia Crosswaithe.
The last 16 episodes of season three have become part of the public domain due to a clerical error back in the 1960's and are thus widely available in different formats and different conditions. The theme song however is still copyrighted material and can only be used with permission. Therefore, most public domain copies have different music during the opening and closing credits. These are the 16 public domain episodes, in order starting with 3.17: "High Noon in Mayberry", "The Loaded Goat", "Class Reunion", "Rafe Hollister Sings", "Opie and the Spoiled Kid", "The Great Filling Station Robbery", "Andy Discovers America", "Aunt Bee's Medicine Man", "The Darlings Are Coming", "Andy's English Valet", "Barney's First Car", "The Rivals", "A Wife for Andy", "Dogs, Dogs, Dogs", "Mountain Wedding", & "The Big House". Coincidentally, this is a pivotal batch of episodes in the show's history; it includes the debut of three characters, Helen Crump, Malcolm Merriwether and Ernest T. Bass, plus one family, the Darlings, as well as Crump's second appearance, the first in which she and Andy are set up as a couple.
The chart over the bookcase in the sheriff's office depicts the Presidents of the United States and information about them and was also a popular chart displayed in elementary school classrooms in the early 1960s.http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0053479/trivia
This post was modified by The_Monkey_Master on 2010-10-02 21:33:32
This post was modified by The_Monkey_Master on 2010-10-02 21:35:05